Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)


April 29, 2012

TIM PRESTON: Spiders, snakes, Sincerely Yours, music and taxi service

ASHLAND — A few months back I covered a Saturday story I wasn’t too excited about. I had seen an old bus with a “reptile show” banner on it parked near the edge of the Kyova Mall parking lot, and honestly figured it was one or two old fellas with a an alligator snapping turtle and a couple of copperheads in aquariums. Once I found the show, however, I realized how completely off base I had been.

The Kentucky Reptile Expo is a collection of people who have a passion for things like giant lizards, hairy spiders, shiny and tiny blue frogs, exotic pets and, of course, snakes.

Even as a nonenthusiast, I had a great time walking around looking at the different animals and the reactions of others to them. It’s amazing one person will pet a big hairy spider without hesitation, while the next won’t hesitate to get the heck away from a big hairy spider.

And, with just a few minutes of education by a few of the well-informed vendors and fans, I learned a great deal about the genetics of snakes and the way modern breeders are helping nature find color and scale variations previously unseen in nature. Much like many of the youngest children in attendance, I was fascinated by the squirming piles of pink rodents that seemed to be on many tables, at least until I realized they are destined to become food for one of the other animals at the show.

I had a good time talking to the show’s coordinator and told him the next time I heard about the program coming to Ashland, I’d do my best to let people know about it in advance. I got a note from him last week advising the KRE will be “invading” Kyova Mall from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Admission is $6 for adults, and those 5 and younger can get in free. For more information about the show, visit kentuckyreptileexpo.com.

Sincerely Yours

I stopped cold in my tracks a few weekends ago (it was actually the night tornadoes ripped through the area) while on an evening assignment in downtown Ashland. It wasn’t the scary forecast that stopped me, it was the sound of one of the area’s most overlooked bands, Velvet Spasm, featuring the phenomenal bass-guitar talents of Bill Stambaugh. The band was playing in the window of a new downtown shop called Sincerely Yours Consignment at 1549 Winchester Ave. beside the Pendleton Art Center.

The shop, owned and operated by the wicked bassist and his wife, Laveena, have already struck deals with some 400 consignors and stocked their shelves and racks with a nice selection of inventory, and they are still accepting consignments on a 50/50 basis. Note: handmade items are consigned on a 60/40 basis, with the designer getting the bigger end of the split.

Sincerely Yours features clothing for infants, toddlers, children, men, women, plus-size apparel, formal wear and evening gowns, shoes, handbags, toys, furniture, household items and more (including a cool old Polaroid camera). Customers can also place Avon orders and shop for vintage collectible Avon products. The shop is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, with extended hours during Ashland Main Street’s Downtown Live and the First Friday Artwalk, when there will be live window models, live music and mural displays by local artists.

The store accepts cash as well as credit and debit cards, and offers a loyal-visitor program providing a 25 percent discount on the 10th shopping visit. For more information, email sincerelyyours2011@yahoo.com or call (606) 393-3529.

Musical education

Many weeks ago I wrote about Faith Cornwell’s new business Music Notes by Faith, specializing in musical instruction for children. Cornwell has since taken on more than 30 students for weekly private piano lessons and is working to expand with group lessons.

“I have a new program called ‘Wunderkeys’ for preschool aged children 3 to 5,” she wrote, adding she is offering the group lessons free during April” in hopes of gaining additional students. The studio will also offer group lessons to students in grades one through six, and Cornwell teaches Kindermusik to ages 1 1/2 to 3 on Mondays in downtown Catlettsburg.

For more information, email fcornwell@zoominternet.net or call (606) 405-3150.

Safeway Taxi

If you have someplace to be but have no way to get there, call (606) 585-8478 and set up a ride with the region’s newest taxi service, Safeway Taxi.

Based in Flatwoods, the business is owned and operated by Robert Parker, a 49-year area resident who also happens to be a towing-vessel captain for Appalachian Electric Power.

“We are here to stay and we’re dedicated to serving the community’s transportation needs,” Parker said.

Safeway Taxi offers 24-hour service, 365 days a year, and all aspects of the business are licensed and commercially insured. Drivers’ records have been screened for customer safety, and the company prides itself on reasonable rates and keeping vehicles clean. The fleet includes a five-passenger minivan.

To schedule a ride or for more information, call (606) 585-8478.

TIM PRESTON can be reached at tpreston@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2651.

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